Monday, 28 August 2023
They gathered in such large numbers that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them.- Mark 2:2
We do not read about the paralytic nor his four friends who brought him getting upset about Jesus forgiving his sins, instead of first speaking words of healing. But we see the so-called righteous scribes who were just bystanders, getting upset. No offense was taken either by the paralytic or his friends because of their desperate need for a healing which they knew could only come from Jesus. And when it did they all gave glory to God thus proving the scribes wrong in their skepticism.
So what does all these events in our reading today show us?
· Salvation from sin is a must
The healing of the paralytic points to the fact that we need to be cleansed from the defiling aspects of sin and be healed from the paralyzing effects of sin. The guilt of sin stifles us, hindering us from being all that God intends us to be. Imagine the relief that the paralytic must have felt when he heard those words of forgiveness. It is not only physical healing we need but total healing in spirit, soul and body. Jesus frees us from the imprisoning paralysis of sin and gives us the power to "take up our beds and walk"- to fulfill the purpose for which we are created. We need to repent of our current ways and acknowledge Him as Lord and Saviour by accepting that He paid the penalty for our sins so that He can free us to obtain eternal life.
· Presence of sin has to be broken
Jesus sees the reasoning in hearts of the teachers of the Law and addresses it. What goes on in our heart is very important and therefore, “Watch over your heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life.”(Proverbs 4:23) Finding fault and being critical are some of the easiest things to do and come naturally to us. But Jesus told us not to judge "lest you be judged" (Matt. 7:1). Heed His command. Secondly, to overcome sin we need to seek the help of His Holy Spirit who remind us of God’s Word- for eg: “I have stored up Your word in my heart, that I might not sin against You.” – Psalm 119:11
· We have to walk
The Lord did not carry the bed for him but commanded him to take up his own bed and walk. When he obeyed he received strength to do so. When the Lord heals and removes its effects in us He does not relieve us of our workloads and responsibilities. We may even have certain burdensome problems and trials of normal daily life, but He enables us to carry them.
· We have to lead many to Christ
When Jesus saw the faith of the four people He was moved (V5). They never gave up when hindered, but found a way to reach him to Jesus. They did it together in unity with others. As believers, we are to be resourceful in reaching others for Christ- through prayer, preaching, witnessing, helping others, etc.—without losing hope, to lead others to Christ.
· Many will oppose
The scribes could have been there in the first place to find fault with Jesus. So when He forgave sins they were quick to latch on to it by calling it blasphemy as only God can forgive sins. They did not know that Jesus is God himself in the flesh. They found fault with Jesus eating with “sinners” at Matthew’s house. As Believers, we too will have opposition when we witness, but the Gospel which is the power of God will do its intended work.
The one faithful approach of our Lord Jesus to each person was His selfless love and patience towards them. He was genuine and caring and took time and made Himself available to all. Everyone needs Jesus!
Quote for the Day: “I have a great need for Christ; I have a great Christ for my need.”– Charles Spurgeon